When we allow our fears and our pain to get the better of us, we lose our ability to think positively. Our negative thinking taints everything, from our self-perception, to our hopes for the future. When we are consumed with negative thinking, we create a self-image based on self-hate, and when we feel so negatively about ourselves, it can’t help but impact our entire lives negatively. We can believe that the idea of positive thinking is simplistic, too good to be true, too simple to actually be effective. How do we make positive thinking work for us in a profound way so that we can benefit from its usefulness and heal ourselves?
Implementing better habits for ourselves means increasing our mindfulness and becoming more conscious of how our habits are affecting us. When we are mindfully more aware of how our habits are holding us back, we’re much more likely to do the work to change them. For example, many of us don’t associate our depression and anxiety with our negative thought patterns. We think of them as conditions we were born with. We see them as chemical imbalances in our brains that we can’t do anything about. To us they’re illnesses that we’re powerless to change. Once we realize that our negative thinking has a direct correlation to how we feel, we know how important it is to change how we think. Our negative thought patterns contribute to our insecurity, which can easily make us depressed. They can make us pessimistic, which can add to our anxiety. Becoming mindful of our habits and how they’re affecting us and our lives gives us more incentive to do the work to change them.
Making positive thinking work for us entails changing our entire self-image and sense of self, our way of talking and relating to ourselves, from within. How do we do this? One effective method is visualization. Let’s practice visualizing how we want to think and feel. Let’s imagine ourselves happy, healthy and whole. When we picture ourselves, let’s allow the images to be full of light and freedom. Another method is to transform our self-talk. Catch yourself when you’re speaking ill of yourself. Start to speak to and about yourself with kind, supportive, encouraging words. When you’re inclined to think of yourself as a failure, tell yourself “I am growing and changing.” When you feel like you’re not good enough, tell yourself “I am perfect the way I am.” When you doubt your chances of recovery, tell yourself “I am succeeding. I am healing.” The more you practice, the more it will become second nature to be self-loving and positive.
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